Garbage Mining

Subject: General Tech | May 21, 2007 - 02:54 PM |
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You may remember in a previous PC Perspective podcast, Jon bringing the topic of e-waste up.  Slashdot has a link to a story that follows up that topic with a look at why it is done.  The actual people in the electronic waste dump get contaminated water and a couple of bucks a day, to harvest waste in which the density of precious metals recovered is higher than in ore mining.  Read on for a very interesting slide show.

"Imagine sheer mountains of discarded Pentium IIIs, tractor trailers overflowing with discarded wall warts. Photojournalist Natalie Behring visited Guiyu, China and documented the world's biggest digital dump where, for $2 per day, the locals sort, disassemble, and pulverize hundreds of tons of e-waste. The payoff is huge: computer waste contains 17 times more gold than gold ore, 40 times more copper than copper ore. But the detritus also leaches chemicals and metals into local water supplies."

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Source: Slashdot